Monthly Archive for February, 2010

Slippery

We are still in the minus for the most part around this place, though because of the temperature fluctuating between +1ºc and -1ºc the snow has a chance to melt ever so slightly on a daily basis. Of course it then turns into super slick ice which the local councils do nothing about. Below is a shot of Treptower Park when the ice wasn’t about and life was actually enjoyable, it looks cold because it was, -16ºc that day.

In saying that, yes, I have slipped/fallen over, I have seen other people slip/fall over (pretty much on a daily basis) and I think the general consensus is that people are totally sick of the ice (as am I). But lets not forget the ice cold puddle of water you might be lucky enough to land in on the way down, like being cold isn’t enough, you’ve gotta be wet too. I guess the worst was the other day when I slipped over directly in front of my office building. Embarrassing!! It just makes getting around so much more difficult……

On top of that, for the first time in the last year I have become very ill. I think it is just the flu but boy is it a bad one. I had Wednesday and Thursday off but went in today because I had some meetings that I couldn’t miss. Unfortunately, once I had started to make my way to work, I realised I was quite a lot sicker than I had anticipated. Sinusitis, congestion, headache, fever and nausea. Oh yeah, I’ve got a real good one this time!! So I stayed at work for half the day, got through all my e-mail and had a couple of meetings and am now back home again lying down feeling terrible.

I hate being sick!

Mount SimsOn top of this is the fact that the Transmediale festival is on at the moment and other than being completely ill, I think I am relatively run down and probably wouldn’t have made it anyway. So unfortunately I have missed out on seeing Mount Sims, although I have seen him before, and tonight I will miss out on Fourtet. I think there are certain signs to tell when you’re depressed, one of those is the feeling of reclusion which I have quite hardcore. I just can’t be bothered seeing anyone nor do I care about anyone or anything. The only thing I’m good for at the moment is working and because I’m stuck in bed it leaves far too much time to think about stuff. And let me tell you, I am seriously unhappy with a lot of stuff.

My life here is just so much more of a pain in the arse than living in the States or Australia. It’s really difficult to put into words as well because it is such a culmination of so many little things. For example, I’ve been here for 4 years now but still do not have a dishwasher and I am god damn sick to death of handwashing dishes…..it is literally causing issues at home…..I hate it. Why don’t I just get one you say, well, the cost plays no role in determining whether we can have one or not, it is the stupid kitchen. Firstly, most rental apartments in Berlin don’t come with a built in kitchen as is typically found in other parts of the western world, no, just a sink and oven if you’re lucky. If you’re unlucky guess who’s buying a kitchen for an apartment they don’t own? You got it.

Luckily (or so I thought at the time), our kitchen area had both a sink and stove. Well, after experiencing just how crap the oven is and how low and back-breaking the sink is I think I would’ve preferred it completely without. There are logistical issues too. The sink doesn’t match any of the rest of the kitchen (that I had to install and pay for myself) and takes up an awkward amount of room. This in turn means that there is not enough room for a freaking dishwasher. I won’t go into the other specifics of this place, but there is more than just that shitting me…… I mean, I could bring up the fact that Berlin is full of dodgy property managers, trying to rip us off with the heating bill, paying for a building cleaner who doesn’t do his job (I mean our garbage bin wasn’t emptied for 2 weeks because no one had cleared the snow from around the bin and it was impossible to move), I could go on. Well hell, I could go on about the fact that in Berlin I need to visit 3 freaking supermarkets if I want to get my grocery shopping done. What the hell happened to a supermarket that has it all with an excellent selection? I mean, I shouldn’t be too negative because they do exist but are usually a little further out (read – VERY inconveniently located), and require a car to get to them.

Anyway, let’s get back too the kitchen issue because it seems I am left with the following two options:

a.) I can either move to another apartment that has the things that I want (if I can find one) that will hopefully also have a good property manager (although I’ve heard on the grapevine that they’re all dodgy here!).

or

b.) I can remove the only kitchen items that were provided with this apartment and replace it with matching gear to the other stuff I’ve already installed (i.e. cupboards, bench, shelves), which essentially means I have built-in and completely paid for a kitchen.

The benefits of both options should be obvious, decent oven and stove-top and a dishwasher. Either way it will involve more cash that I’m not particularly flush with at the minute, and if building into my current apartment, will go entirely against my principles.

Anyway, that is my whine for the minute, just had a call from a friend who’s flying to Dubai tomorrow, and as much as I don’t love that place I’d still love to get the hell out of here for some sunshine. No skiing or snowboarding this season, no fucking way!

Shit, this ain’t no joke……

This has got to be one of the best remixes of a hip-hop track that I’ve ever heard. Haven’t you ever wondered about the science that goes into lyrics like this? And in saying that I mean no disrespect to Snoop Dogg, I like his hip-hop and his style of rapping but this remix is just excellent, it definitely adds something.

First, take a quick listen to the original from 1995, which was the sec0nd single released from the debut album “Doggystyle”. The song essentially pays homage to Seagrams and Tanqueray gin.

And this is the remix: